Whittier Farms Inc. is located at 90 Douglas Road in the historic and picturesque town of Sutton, Massachusetts. The farm is presently owned and operated by the fourth and fifth generations of the Whittier Family. The farm was started in 1945 with the purchase of two foundation cows by Robert and Harold Whittier. The farm was owned and operated as Whittier Bros. Hill-N-Dale Farm and located on top of Town Farm Road in Sutton. A partnership and expansion program started in 1947 with the purchase of a joining farm of 106 acres. In 1949, another farm of 100 acres was added to supply feed for our growing herd.
In 1960, another 160 acre farm was bought and this is now the main location of the farm on Douglas Road in Sutton. In 1962 the partnership was ended and a corporation was formed, Whittier Farms, Inc. In 2010, Whittier Farms Inc. became part of Massachusetts Agricultural Preservation Restriction Program, the land will be protected as farmland and will only be able to be used for farming and not developed for any other reason. Placing the farm in the APR program will help us keep our commitment to keeping agriculture alive and well right here in Sutton, Massachusetts.
The farm is situated on approximately 500 acres of beautiful farmland. The farm consists of two locations which oversee each other from the tops of two hills with rolling farm fields nestled between them, depicting a true New England countryside.
Whittier Farms is a dairy farm with a herd size of 300 Registered Holsteins. A Holstein is a black and white dairy cattle originating from northern Holland and Friesland. Whittier Farms is recognized throughout the world for establishing high standards for genetic science resulting in the breeding of top Holstein cows. Breeding high quality cows enables the farm to produce top quality milk without the use of artificial additives. The cows are fed a balance ration, consisting of crops that are grown on the farm or land rented by Whittier Farms Inc. Approximately 400 acres is utilized to grow hay, grass silage, and corn silage. The farm currently ships our milk every other day to Agrimark, a Cabot Creamery Cooperative brand (Cabot Cheese and Butter).
Whittier Farms operates year round with a retail farm store carrying many products from our farm and other local farms as well as products grown in neighboring New England states. The retail store at the farm is a 30 year old, overgrown 4-H project. A table underneath the tree on the front lawn with sweet corn, a fishing box and sign, "honor system" has changed into a year round farm stand with a variety of products, employees and cash registers. The same principle remains, good, farm fresh produce. The retail store offers dairy products, our own seasonal fruits and vegetables grown on the farm, and products grown in neighboring New England states. Other products include: soups and chowders, chicken and turkey pot pies, ice cream, frozen seafood dinners, local bakery breads, and our home-made pies and baked goods.
Some of the crops include sweet corn, blueberries, broccoli, cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes, beans, summer and winter squashes, and add additional crops each year. Support is provided to local homeowners by selling composted cow manure, screened loam, and bark mulch.
Late in 2014, our 150,000 watt solar array went live after years of developing a strategic plan, working with many contractors, and our local government. Our system is designed to offset the high electrical costs that we incur from operating a farm. The power produced by our solar panels is consumptive of about 85-90% of our overall electric bill. Our system was installed by EthoSolar on land that was previously unproductive land. In other words, we cleared a wooded area rather than tearing out a corn field so we get a better use of the land and we don't lose any of our crop land. We are very happy to have a sustainable power supply. The installation of the solar array also finally brought three-phase power to our business which will allow us to continue with equipment upgrades in the future to improve our energy efficiency and become a more sustainable business.